The various steps taken by the government to improve and boost online education during the lockdown were informed by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman while announcing fifth and last tranche of the Rs 20-lakh crore Covid-19 packages.
PM e-vidya program
To promote e-learning and to make digital education feasible for both teachers and students, union finance minister Nirmala sitaraman launched the e-Vidya program.
PM e-vidya program will be launched and initiated soon by the government to ease multi-mode access to digital/online education. 12 DTH channels, with one dedicated to classes 1 to 12 each under the PM e-Vidya program.
Multi-mode access to digital/online education will be announced shortly as per the Finance minister. DIKSHA, one nation, one digital platform facility for school education will also consist of this. There will be one earmarked Tv channel for each class(one class, one channel).
Features of e-Vidya Programme
This is a program for multimode access to online/digital education. It will consist of :
DIKSHA promotes ‘one nation, one digital platform’ for school education in various states and union territories. QR coded energized textbooks for all grades and e-content will be available. 25 crore school children will be benefited across the nation under this program.
The content under DIKSHA will be available in 14 languages including – Assamese, Bengali, English, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Odia, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu, Chhattisgarhi.
High-quality e-resources will be available for learning and teaching over the next three months. The Vidyadaan plan under DIKSHA is conceptualized as a common national program aimed at donation/contribution of e-learning resources through individuals & organizations across the country. These contributed materials will be used for school education for ensuring a quality learning and mainly it’s continuity.
one class, one channel: school education
Extensive use of radio, community radio, and podcasts will be used among students. A total of 289 community radio stations will be used for school education.
“Shiksha Vani” podcast of CBSE will disseminate audio content on various subjects fro standards 9 to 12. CBSE – Shiksha Vani is available to download on play store for Android Phone users. Currently this podcast contains 400 pieces of content as audio files by the NCERT curriculum.
For visually and hearing impaired students, special e-content had been prepared. Finance minister referred to it as a very big and heart touching step by the HRD ministry that they have planned on providing to good quality education to the Divyang students.
Content for visually and hearing impaired children has been developed on Digitally Accessible Information System (DAISY) and in sign language on the NIOS website.
Considering the issue of students who do not have much access to the internet MHRD has introduced SWAYAM PRABHA DTH channels. SWAYAM PRABHA DTH channels are a group of 32 channels that will be devoted to telecasting high-quality educational programs.
Four channels, (27- Panini, 28-Sharda, 30- Gyanamrit, and 32- Vagda) are already in use by NIOS and even one channel (31- Kishore Manch) is being used by NCERT to telecast school education-related learning and teaching material. Anyone can access these channels accessed through DD, Dish TV, and Jio TV app.
Various Other Programmes are :
Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman also talked about various other programs for boosting the education system in a press conference on Sunday.
1. Manordarpan: An initiative or psychological support and for counseling students teachers and families for mental health and emotional well-being.
2. A globally integrated and as per the skill requirements of the 21st century a new National Curriculum and Pedagogical framework will be launched for school, early childhood, and teachers.
3. For ensuring that every child attains learning levels and outcomes in grade 5 by 2025 a National Foundational Literacy and Numeracy Mission will be launched by December 2020.
Universities to hold online courses
FM also stated the top 100 universities will also start online courses by May 30. This will include extensive use of podcasts, radio, and e-content. Top 100 universities including IITs, IIMs, Institutes of eminence, and national institutes will be permitted to hold online courses by May 30.